What Local Historic District DOES NOT do: · Does not regulate paint colors · Does not require repairs or renovations to be made · Does not increase taxes beyond normal increases for the City or County · Does not prevent additions · Does not prevent non-contributing homes from being demolished · Does not require use of historic materials or historic building methods · Does not require that you open you home to the public · Does not restrict routine maintenance of properties
What Local Historic District DOES do: · Recognizes that Oakhurst has a distinctive historic character important to the overall character of the City of Decatur · Encourages creative and compatible development with historic areas · Requires that a Certificate of Appropriateness be obtained for exterior changes to contributing properties, demolition of buildings, and new construction. · Applies only to major renovations to the exterior of your home. Interior renovations are not restricted.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Boundaries of the proposed local historic district

There was a question sent to our e-mail address asking how the boundaries of the local historic district where determined.

Town of Oakhurst was formed in 1910. The Decatur Resource Manual states that the main streets of residential development for the town of Oakhurst were Park Place, Viola (Madison), College Avenue, Mead’s Road (Mead Road) and Winter Avenue. Subdivisions included Lenox Place (1910) Madison Subdivision (1910), Winters Subdivision (1910), East Lake Land Development Co., (1910), Feld Realty (1910), John Ridley (1910). Lenox Place was not included within the boundaries because the community felt they no longer had an identity linked to Oakhurst. An annexation map shows that the area within the boundaries was annexed into Decatur at the same time, which was later than Greenwood Place, Greenwood Avenue, Olympic Avenue, Jefferson Place, W. Benson and W. Hill. The streets included have a consistency in architecture and represent a cohesive representation of a particular time and provide a sense of place. The architecture and development draw a clear picture of life in one of the earliest subdivisions in Decatur and a community transitioning from rail to trolley to automobile. The very early history of this community was used to determine boundaries. But there are layers of history contained in these streets that is indicative of the neighborhood and Decatur as a whole. More to come.

It is true that there are older and grander homes scattered throughout Oakhurst. It has been said by many that the entire area could qualify for historic preservation protection. However, when gathering information and comments related to the local historic district the area within the boundaries stood out as a concise time in history with a consistent architecture that was mostly intact with strong community interest in seeking protection.